Which Dial is Fake?








Can you tell which one of the above dials is the fake one?

The first two pictures, supplied by Omega collector, Phil Cooper, are the genuine articles! So, how can you tell?

The first thing that should raise suspicion is NOS cross-hair dials - they seem to be everywhere at the moment - presenting as shiny, new and seemingly factory made. They're not!  Well, at least not at Omega factories anyway.

The next giveaway is the date surround. Note how the surrounds on first two examples are bevelled to make the top and bottom bars of the surround look slightly concave. Close inspection will reveal multiple bevelling to create this pleasing and detailed effect. Note the absense of the effect on the third example.

Note also how the bevelling on the surrounds on the genuine dials creates an eight sided effect on the upper parts of the surround, whereas in the fake example is uniformly rounded at the upper and lower parts of the surround.

The third sign is in the Constellation lettering. The first indicator is the thickness of the script. The second is inaccuracies in the lettering. For example where the S loops to the T in CONST the fake dial loops higher than the genuine lettering. The I is not dotted in the fake dial but is always dotted in genuine dials and notice how the Ns are formed differently.

The fourth sign is that the hands of the fake dial have black inserts, whereas the dial has written "Swiss Made T" at six o'clock.  The T indicates luminosity of either the markers or the hands and is never found on authentic dials and hands that do not have lume on either the markers or the hands.

Someone, somewhere is manufacturing fake dials and probably cases too, and as the values appreciate for Pie Pan Constellations, do expect to see more fakes around.

Phil Cooper also said that Omega in Bienne now replaces damaged PiePan dials with rounded and not twelve-sided dials as they no longer have stock of the latter. 

The lesson from this exercise is that there are some very clever fakes circulating, and it behoves collectors to build up a good reference library of large pics of authentic dials and cases so a comparison can be made. Often the naked eye is not enough to spot the diferences.

For more information on identifying Franken and inauthentic Connies please click here

13 comments:

  1. Michael Bryce2:05 am

    Thanks very much for your beautifully written comments on Omega collecting. I'm a new collector and value your insights. Of course, the most convenient market in which to buy watches is E-Bay. To be sure, this convenience makes it all the easier for fraudsters to play their tricks. With this in mind, here's the help I'd welcome from you. First, I'd like to know who among the hundreds of E-Bay's watch sellers consistently offer "honest watches" and observe general standards of collectibility in their watch descriptions. I, and I think others who read your blog, would very much enjoy reading responses from others as well (together with your replies) about E-Bay sellers. Second, where else should we Connie Collectors look for vintage watches. Third, are there any guides, articles, or other written references we should consult in the pursuit of our mutual collecting passion?

    Thank you very much for any help you can offer. Your blog, itself, is a significant and much appreciated reference.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks Michael for you generous comments,

    I'm away on the eastern seaboard and hence have only now been able to moderate your
    comments and post them on the blog. I decided to moderate because of a number of people
    placing ads on the blog, one even for Viagra!

    I note on your other comment you mention that one of the offenders has private feedback. Yes,
    this is a sign of someone who may wish to shill bid without being caught and also to stop people
    contacting those who may have bid on his watches. For example the winner of an auction for a
    fake Blancpain watch cannot be contacted by other members because his/her identity isnt
    revealed. I have a problem bidding on any auction that has private bidding and private feedback -
    to me the claims of protecting buyer privacy and inhibiting bogus second chance offers is a
    smoke screen for bad commercial behaviour.

    If you send me your email address to my email mentioned in my profile I will send you when I return to home base a copy of an article
    I wrote that appeared in Antiques and Collectibles Magazine in April this year. It covers a number
    of facets of collecting Constellations.

    In respect to recommending sellers, I think that its so difficult to do as, from my perspective, the reputation of Ebay sellers stands on each and every sale. I look at feedback carefully before bidding and I tend to only bid in auctions where the seller is willing to disclose fully any information requested.

    If I buy on ebay, I ask for large pics, always of movement and dial, also I want all the numbers and a pic of the case back. I ask for service history and details of any
    restoration or repair. If theyre not interested in giving me info, I dont bid.

    Other places I have picked up very good buys are:
    *Car boot sales and Trash and Treasures - it's amazing sometime what one finds.
    *Timezone and other watch forums. Their trading threads are quite a good source, but make sure
    you get references from the seller and, once again, ask for large pics and full disclosure.
    *Bricks and mortar dealers - sometimes you'll find a good buy: I always ask for the watch to be
    opened and examine the movement with a jewellers loupe - and always go through my checklist.
    *Bidfun run by a German Doctor, Roland Ranfft, can often have some good stock. Ive bought a
    few watches including Connies from that source. http://www.ranfft.de/uhr/index-e.htm

    In terms of Books, I would definitely recommend Omega Watches by John Goldberger (For very good reference pics of earlier Constellations) There isnt much copy but the pics are great;
    Omega Designs: Feast for the Eyes by Anton Kreuzer is quite a good book with lots of text, plates
    of movements and some very good pics; Omega Saga is available directly from OMega and has
    fantasic pics but is in French.

    I intend to post a Collectors Bill of Rights for my next post detailing what buyers should demand
    before bidding.


    regards

    desmond

    ReplyDelete
  3. John Hannover7:50 am

    I think the star on the top of the three connies are not pointing strait up - actually a warning sign that it might be a re-dial - but maybe it is just the picture. Often if the star is taken of for a redial, as you point out, they are put bach with glue, and then not always precisely pointing up

    ReplyDelete
  4. Good one John.

    I agree, often the first thing that is noticable on closer examination of Connie dials is the misaligned star. On original Connies one point of the star always heads directly at twelve o'clock.

    Cheers

    desmond

    ReplyDelete
  5. I have a hair cross on my omega... but i'am (pretty) shure it's an authentic : it's a non-prestigious genève line, cal 552 case 165-037. i think the faked constellation here is only an "upgrade" of a simple genève like mine, or a original-genève design based new dial, it's easy to change

    ReplyDelete
  6. Anonymous9:22 pm

    I often read your comments on Omega watches and they have helped me learn quite a bit about Constellations. I would appreciate if you could take a look at an e-bay seller . His constellations seem to look a lot like each other, ie perfect dials, no scratches etc. Item#280518211684 Some of them look like fakes to me. I would just like the opinion of an expert
    Thanks
    Don

    ReplyDelete
  7. Hi, is there anyone who can identify if this is a genuine vintage watch? It looks good... almost too good:

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/282164679859?_trksid=p2060353.m1438.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT

    If I look closely to the details it appears right.
    What do you think?

    many thnx!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, it does appear correct in all ways cosmetically. Very important for pictures of the movement to be viewed, and to assure yourself that the seller is legitimate.

      Regards

      Desmond

      Delete
    2. thnx for your quick answer!

      Delete
  8. Anonymous12:07 pm

    I purchased a Omega Constellation from a home sale. Is black lettering acceptable (Roman Numerals)

    ReplyDelete
  9. It depends on the model. If it is a caliber 711 or 712 movement then it may be genuine

    ReplyDelete
  10. Omega Constellation- 167.005 - All original?
    Hi Desmond,
    I need your opinion on this watch? Listed the in Bay. Do you think all parts are original? Seller asking for $1500? Too much? I appreciate any comment as always
    https://www.ebay.com/itm/152431133348

    Christian

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Christian,

      Quite a tidy and genuine example. Minute hand looks just a tad long but otherwise the watch presents well. In terms oif price, a good pie pan with BOR bracelet is fetching at least that kind of money now

      Cheers

      Desmond

      Delete